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Short poem

Albert Frank Moritz (1947-)


              1I wish we could control this revolting
              2want of control: these people
              3with their spongy eyes, their mouths
              4of trembling shoehorns, billhooks for penises
              5and bear traps for vulvas.
              6One taste of sunlight and at once
              7they can't do without it. Water,
              8the same, and food, and air,
              9and a dozen other squalid habits.
            10Some -- like their copulation,
            11a rusting carnation in a cut-glass neck --
            12are not physically compulsive but
            13the partners can't stop wanting them to be:
            14so we desire to be raped
            15by love, who would fill us, they say,
            16with an oil from the lit braziers of stars.
            17What if, doing it every day,
            18we resemble pistons, and the slow poison
            19cuts our lives off at 70:
            20it's the grim determination
            21of our passion. And beyond this, even I --
            22defended in childhood by my strong father
            23the piano and my mother the virtuoso
            24from knuckles among warehouses -- even I
            25am addicted to the mild light of words.

Online text copyright © 2004, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
This poem cannot be published anywhere without the written consent of Albert Frank Moritz or the Insomniac Press permissions department.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Early Poems (Toronto: Insomniac Press, 2002): 25. PS 8576 .074 E27 Robarts Library
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: 2004
Recent editing: 1:2004/7/22

Other poems by Albert Frank Moritz